Leopold Daun Infantry

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Origin and History

The regiment was raised in 1682, during the Great Turkish War, for Colonel Melchior Leopold, Baron van der Böck zu Leopoldsdorf.

On May 6 1683, the regiment left the camp near Kittsee/AT and marched towards Komorn (present-day Komárom/HU)” From July 3, it took part in the siege of Neuhäusel (present-day Nové Zámky/SK). From July 13, it participated in the relief of Vienna. After the great victory of the Imperial troops, the regiment took up its winter-quarters in Upper Hungary (present-day Slovakia). Between July 15 and October 19 1684, it was at the siege of Ofen. On August 16 1685, it fought in the battle of Gran (present-day Esztregom/HU) and, on August 20, in the siege of Neuhäusel. From June 18 until September 2 1686, the regiment took part in the second siege of Ofen. Furthermore, it participated in the capture of Kaposvár, Pécs, Siklós and Szegedin. On August 12 1687, it fought in the battle of Mohács and then spent winter in Transylvania. In 1688, it was at the blockade of Stuhlweissenburg (present-day Székesfehérvár/HU) which surrender on May 19. Later on, the regiment was at the siege of Belgrade.

In 1689, during the Nine Years' War (1688–97), the regiment took part in the siege of Mainz and Bonn. In 1691, the regiment was back in the Balkans to fight the Turks. On 19 August, it fought in the Battle of Slankamen where it was one of the regiment who suffered the heaviest losses. In 1694 and 1695, the regiment campaigned in Germany and, in 1695, returned to Hungary once more. On September 11 1697, it took part in the Battle of Zenta.

During the War of the Spanish Succession, by the end of April 1702, the regiment was on the march for the Rhine. Around the end of July, it joined the army of the Margrave of Baden in front of Landau. From August to September, the regiment then took part in the siege and capture of Landau. In August and September 1703, most of the regiment took part in the defence of Alt-Breisach. After the surrender of the place, the proprietor of the regiment was discharged and Colonel Tanner set cashiered. Anton Aegidius Count Jörger von Tolet was appointed as new proprietor. In 1704, the regiment took part in the recapture of Landau. In 1705, it was transferred to Hungary to quench Rákóczi Uprising. On 11 November, it fought in the Battle of Schibo and later in the Battle of Klausenburg (present-day Cluj/RO).. By the beginning of 1709, the entire regiment was stationed in Upper Hungary and fought at Kesmark (present-day Kežmarok/SK) and Leutschau (present-day Levoča/SK). At the end of September 1710, it participated in the siege and capture of Neuhäusel. In 1713, it was transferred to the Rhine where it took part in the defence of Landau which finally had to surrender.

In 1716, the regiment took part in the battles of Peterwardein and Temesvar against the Turks. Later on, it took up its winter-quarter along the border with Transylvania. The proprietor of the regiment, Count Jörger von Tolet died, and Ottokar Count Starhemberg was appointed as new proprietor.

During the War of the Quadruple Alliance, on June 20 1719 in Sicily, the regiment took part in the battle of Francavilla and in the subsequent siege of Messina.

In 1737, the regiment went to Hungary. Then two battalions and the grenadiers were sent to Serbia, and one battalion to Transylvania. In 1738, the regiment concentrated in Transylvania: one battalion went to Klausenburg, and two battalions and the grenadiers, to the camp of the main army at Karansebes. On July 4, the elements previously posted at Karansebes fought at Kornia; and on July 9, at Mehadia.

During the War of the Austrian Succession, in 1741, the regiment initially took part in the campaigns of Bohemia. On May 17 1742, it fought in the battle of Chotusitz where it lost 8 officers and 212 men killed, and 15 officers and 210 men wounded. On June 4 1745, the regiment took part in the battle of Hohenfriedberg where it distinguished itself by covering the retreat of the Austrian army, suffering heavy losses. On September 30 of the same year, it fought in the battle of Soor.

As per the Etat nouveau des Troupes de sa Majesté Impériale Royale comme elles se trouvent effectivement l'an 1759 and Etat général des Troupes qui servent sa Majesté Impériale et Royale Apostolique sur pié en 1760, the regiment counted 4 battalions (2 grenadier coys and 16 fusilier coys) for a total of 2,300 men. This was the administrative organisation of the regiment. However, the tactical organisation differed: 2 field fusilier battalions, each of 6 companies; 2 grenadier companies (usually converged with grenadiers from other battalions into an ad hoc unit); and 1 garrison battalion of 4 companies (see Austrian Line Infantry Organisation for more details).

During the Seven Years' War, the chef of the regiment was:

During the Seven Years' War, its colonel-commander was:

  • from in 1749: Johann Wolf
  • from 1757: Colonel Karl Count Pellegrini
  • from 1759: Colonel Franz de Paula Joseph, Reichsgraf von Daun
  • from 1766: Otto Count Hohenfeld

After the signature of the Treaty of Hubertusburg, the regiment remained in Bohemia until 1771.

Regimental numbers were introduced only in 1769 when this regiment was designated as "I.R. 59".

Service during the War

In September 1756, two battalions of the regiment were in Bohemia with Piccolomini's covering force in the Königshof-Kolin region.

On June 18 1757, the regiment took part in the Battle of Kolin where it was deployed in the on the left of the first line in Angern’s Brigade. The regiment then followed the retiring Prussians and, in July, took part in the capture of Gabel (present day Jablonné v Podještědí/CZ) where it lost there 2 officers and 16 men killed; and 3 officers and 66 men wounded. In October, one battalion was allocated to FML Count Hadik's Corps who conducted a raid on Berlin. In October and November, another battalion led by Lieutenant-Colonel Zorn von Blowsheim distinguished itself in Nádasdy's Corps during the Siege of Schweidnitz (Blowsheim would, on December 4 1758, be decorated with the Maria-Theresia-Order for his conduct at Schweidnitz). On November 22, two battalions led by Colonel Pellegrini took part in the Battle of Breslau where they were deployed in Unruhe's Brigade, in the first line of the infantry centre under Baron Kheul, while a third battalion was deployed in the first line of the infantry centre of Nádasdy's Corps (Colonel Pellegrini, who had distinguished himself in that battle would be decorated by the Maria-Theresia-Order on December 4 1758). On December 5, at the Battle of Leuthen, two battalions of the regiment were deployed in Macquire's Brigade in the first line of the infantry right wing under Kheul. In that disastrous battle, the regiment lost 59 men killed; 19 officers and 348 men wounded; and 8 officers and 284 men taken prisoners of war. The remains of the regiment took up their winter-quarters at Opotschno (present-day Opočno/CZ).

By August 2 1758, the regiment served in the second line of the main Austrian army under the command of Daun near Jarmeritz. Daun was following up the Prussian army retiring through Bohemia after the failure of the invasion of Moravia. On October 14, two battalions of the regiment took part in the Battle of Hochkirch where they were deployed in the first line of the left column of Daun's main army, directly south of Hochkirch. They lost 20 men killed; Lieutenant-Colonel Franz Count Daun, 2 officers and 167 men wounded. The regiment spent the winter at Schlan (present-day Slaný/CZ).

By mid August 1759, the regiment was part of Daun's Corps posted in Silesia. On September 2, it took part in the Combat of Sorau.

On July 20 1760, the regiment took part in the relief of Dresden and, on October 9, in the surprise of Berlin within Lacy's auxiliary troops. On November 3, the regiment fought in the Battle of Torgau where it lost 3 officers and 40 men killed; 6 officers and 130 men wounded; and 4 officers and 43 men taken prisoners of war. The proprietor of the regiment, Leopold Count Daun was equally wounded in this battle. The regiment then took its winter-quarters around Berg-Gießhübel and Gabel (present-day Jablonné v. Pod./CZ).

In 1761, the regiment remained in the area of Berg-Gießhübel and Gabel. At the end of the year, it formed part of the cordon of troops deployed near Meissen.

In 1762, one battalion of the regiment formed part of the garrison of the Fortress of Schweidnitz. On August 8, the Prussians laid siege to Schweidnitz. On October 9, the fortress surrendered and the battalion was taken prisoners of war.

Uniform

For the moment we have very few information on the uniform in 1756, at the outbreak of the war. Most of our references describe the uniform in 1762. However, Muhsfeldt and Schirmer mention that, in 1756-57, the coat was white lined white (therefore white turnbacks), the distinctive colour was red and the waistcoat and breeches were white. Therefore, the uniform at the beginning of the war seems to have been almost identical to the uniform of 1762.

Privates

Uniform in 1762 - Source: Kronoskaf
Uniform in 1762
as per the Bautzener Handschrift

completed with other sources where necessary
Headgear
Musketeer black tricorne laced white with an elaborate golden fastener on the left side; a green cockade and a red pompom in each lateral corne)
Grenadier bearskin with a poppy red bag laced white and a white tassel
Neckstock one red and one black (for parades the regimental commanders agreed before on the colour of the neckstocks)
Coat white lined white with 3 yellow buttons under the right lapel and 1 yellow button in the small of the back on each side
Collar none
Shoulder Straps poppy red fastened by a yellow button (left shoulder only)
Lapels poppy red with 7 yellow buttons (1-3-3)
Pockets horizontal pockets, each with 3 yellow buttons
Cuffs poppy red with 3 yellow buttons
Turnbacks white fastened with a poppy red fastener
Waistcoat white with 2 rows of small yellow buttons (3-3-3) and with horizontal pockets, each with 3 yellow buttons
Breeches white
Gaiters one pair of black (for winter) and one pair of white gaiters (for summer and parade)
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt white
Waistbelt white with a brass buckle
Cartridge Box black with a small brass plate carrying the initials “MT”
Bayonet Scabbard black with brass fittings
Scabbard black (grenadiers only)
Footgear black shoes


Troopers were armed with a musket (Model 1745 for fusiliers, Model 1754 for grenadiers). Grenadiers carried a sabre while fusiliers carried only a bayonet.

Other interpretations

Donath illustrates the following differences:

  • white shoulder strap on the left shoulder
  • a red fastener with 2 small yellow button at each turnback

Knötel illustrates the following differences:

  • tricorne with 1 white cockade and 2 red pompoms (in the lateral corne)
  • a white fastener with 2 yellow buttons at each turnback

NCOs

NCO of Leopold Daun Infantry in 1762 - Copyright: Franco Saudelli

Sergeants carried a halberd and a wooden stick.

Corporals carried a halberd.

Officers

The officers wore the same uniform as the privates with the following exceptions:

  • tricorne laced gold with a white and green cockade
  • black neckstock
  • no shoulder strap
  • no turnbacks
  • yellow and black silk sash

Senior officers carried sticks identifying their rank:

  • lieutenant: bamboo stick without knob
  • captain: long rush stick with a bone knob
  • major: long rush stick with a silver knob and a small silver chain
  • lieutenant-colonel: long rush stick with a larger silver knob without chain
  • colonel: long rush stick with a golden knob

Musicians

As per a regulation of 1755, musicians were now distinguished from troopers only by poppy red swallow nests on the shoulders.

The drum had a brass barrel decorated with black flames at the bottom and with a black double headed Eagle on a yellow field. Rims were decorated with red and white diagonal stripes. The bandolier was white.

Colours

All German infantry regiments carried identical colours: a white Leibfahne (colonel) and yellow Regimentsfahne. The hand painted colours were made of silk and measured Size 178 cm x 127 cm. The 260 cm long flagpoles had golden finial and were decorated with black and yellow spirals of cloth.

The colonel colour was carried by the first battalion.

Colonel flag (Leibfahne):

  • field: white
  • border: alternating white and yellow outer waved triangles pointing inwards, red and black inner waved triangles pointing outwards
  • obverse (right): the Immaculate Mother of God (which had been declared the patroness of the army by kaiser Ferdinand III) on a cloud, crushing a snake under her foot and surrounded by rays
  • reverse (left): crowned and armed Imperial double-eagle with the "Lothringen-Toscanian" arms on a shield and the initials of the Emperor CF (Corregens Franciscus) on the left wing and IM (Imperator Magnus) on the right
Leibfahne – Source: PMPdeL

Regimental flags (Regimentsfahne):

  • field: yellow
  • border: alternating white and yellow outer waved triangles pointing inwards, red and black inner waved triangles pointing outwards
  • obverse (right): crowned and armed Imperial double-eagle with the "Lothringen-Toscanian" arms on a shield and the initials of the Emperor CF (Corregens Franciscus) on the left wing and IM (Imperator Magnus) on the right
  • reverse (left): unarmed and crowned Imperial double-eagle with the arms of Hungaria and Bohemia on a shield and the initials M on the left wing and T on the right
Regimentsfahne – Source: PMPdeL

In fact, the situation on the field was slightly more complex than this, since colours were usually replaced only when worn out. It is fairly possible that some regiment who had been issued colours of the 1743 pattern were still carrying them at the beginning of the Seven Years' War. For more details, see Austrian Line Infantry Colours.

References

This article contains texts from the following sources, which are now in the public domain:

  • Leiler, A.: Geschichte des k. k. Infanterie-Regiments Erzherzog Rainer No. 59, Salzburg, 1856
  • Gräffer, August: Geschichte der kaiserl. Königl. Regimenter, Corps, Bataillons und anderer Militär-Branchen seit ihrer Errichtung biz zu Ende des Feldzuges 1799, Vol. 1, Vienna, 1804, pp. 248-253
  • Seyfart, Kurzgefaßte Geschichte aller kaiserlich-königlichen Regimenter zu Pferde und zu Fuß, Frankfurth and Leipzig, 1762, pp. 8-9

Other sources

Dihm, Dr. Hermann; Oesterreichische Standarten und Fahnen zur Zeit des 7 jährigen Krieges, Die Zinnfigur, Klio

Donath, Rudolf; Die Kaiserliche und Kaiserlich-Königliche Österreichische Armee 1618-1918, 2. Aufl., Simbach/Inn 1979

Etat nouveau des Troupes de sa Majesté Impériale Royale comme elles se trouvent effectivement l'an 1759

Etat général des Troupes qui servent sa Majesté Impériale et Royale Apostolique sur pié en 1760

Funcken, Liliane and Fred, Les uniformes de la guerre en dentelle

Hausmann, Friedrich, Die Feldzeichen der Truppen Maria Theresias, Schriften des Heeresgeschichtlichen Museums, vol. 3, Vienna: 1967

Knötel, Herbert d.J.; Brauer, Hans M.: Heer und Tradition / Heeres-Uniformbogen (so-called “Brauer-Bogen”), Berlin 1926-1962, Österreich-Ungarn – 1756-63

Muhsfeldt, Th.; Abzeichenfarben der K. und K. Regimenter zu Fuss im Jahre 1757 und früher, in Mitteilungen zur Geschichte des militärischen Tracht, No. 12, 1904

Schirmer, Friedrich, Die Heere der kriegführenden Staaten 1756-1763, hrsg. von der KLIO-Landesgruppe Baden-Württemberg, überarb. u. aktual. Neuauflage 1989

Seidel, Paul; Nochmals österreichische Standarten und Fahnen zur Zeit des 7 jährigen Krieges, Die Zinnfigur, Clio

Thümmler, L.-H., Die Österreichiches Armee im Siebenjährigen Krieg: Die Bautzener Bilderhandschrift aus dem Jahre 1762, Berlin 1993

N.B.: the section Service during the War is mostly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.

Acknowledgments

Harald Skala for the translation and integration of Leiler's work

Michael Zahn for gathering most of the information about the uniform of this regiment